PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
August 3, 2015

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

New Jersey Department of Health Proposes to Readopt with Amendments Rules Governing Certificate of Need: Long Term Acute Care Hospitals at N.J.A.C. 8:33F

The Office of Certificate of Need and Healthcare Facility Licensure in the Division of Certificate of Need and Licensing in the Health Systems Branch of the New Jersey Department of Health (Department) is proposing to readopt with amendments the rules governing Certificate of Need:  Long Term Acute Care Hospitals at N.J.A.C. 8:33F.  The proposed rulemaking regulates the process by which interested parties may apply for a certificate of need to obtain a license to operate a long term acute care hospital (LTAC) that requires such certification from the Department. 

The Department has reviewed the rules of this chapter and has determined this readoption with amendments is necessary, reasonable, and proper to maintain the regulatory framework known as the certificate of need process, which ensures access to, and quality of, health care services for LTACs in accordance with the Health Care Facilities Planning Act (N.J.S.A. 26:2H).

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-1.2 to add a definition for "Diagnosis related groups" or "(DRGs)."  This term was previously included in the rule by reference to N.J.A.C. 8:31B-3.77, but was deleted from N.J.A.C. 8:31B when that chapter was amended.

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.3 to remove the reference to a 2009 deadline for the acceptance of applications for LTACs under the expedited review process and replace it with the phrase, "upon the publication in the New Jersey Register of a call for applications."

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.3(b)(1)(i) to require applicants to submit, as part of their certificate of need application, written agreements with general hospitals located within one hour (non-peak) travel time of the long term acute care hospital that assign part or all of their LTAC bed need, as published by the Department pursuant to N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.3(b).

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.3(c)(2) to change the method to calculate bed need by using the 26 DRG codes most frequently used by LTACs, selected from the DRG codes identified in the annual notice published in the Federal Register by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services pursuant to 42 CFR §412.535.  Consistent with this amendment, the Department is also proposing technical amendments to 8:33F-2.3(c)(3) to streamline the formula.

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.3(e) to provide that certificate of need applications would be accepted "upon the publication in the New Jersey Register of a call for applications."

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:33F-2.5 to incorporate N.J.A.C. 8:31B-3.3 by reference, as amended and supplemented.  This change would clarify the reporting requirements in the current rule by directing LTAC licensees to the rule that requires hospital data and programmatic reporting instead of describing the reporting requirements in the rule text.

A notice of proposal appears in the August 3, 2015 issue of the New Jersey Register.  Interested individuals may gain free on-line access to the New Jersey Administrative Code and the New Jersey Register at http://lexisnexis.com/njoal, courtesy of LexisNexis®.

The Department will accept written comments on the proposal during a period of public comment, which begins on August 3, 2015 and ends on October 2, 2015.  For electronic submission, please go to https://nj.gov/health/legal/ecomments.shtml  and follow instructions for filing an official comment no later than October 2, 2015.   Address regular U.S.P.S. mail to: Joy L. Lindo, Director, Office of Legal and Regulatory Compliance, New Jersey Department of Health, PO Box 360, Trenton, NJ 08625-0360: Address correspondence sent by Courier or Hand Delivery Service to:  Joy L. Lindo, Director, Office of Legal and Regulatory Compliance, New Jersey Department of Health, 369 South Warren Street, Trenton, NJ  08608.  All hard copy correspondence must be marked as having been received by the carrier of record on or before October 2, 2015.  The Department does not accept facsimiles as official comments on the notice of proposal.

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Last Reviewed: 8/3/2015